Tart Cherries and Your Health

The buzz around my work place lately is cherry juice, cherry juice, cherry juice. From Physicians to Nurses to Ancillary Staff cherry concentrate is all the rage. So being the curious nurse I am, I decided to look into the phenomenon.

Tart Cherry Juice Concentrate

Tart cherries are loaded with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory agents. We have all heard about how red fruits and vegetables such as strawberries, raspberries, beets, red beans, apples, cranberries, red onions, and kidney beans are all rich in antioxidants (specifically Anthocyanins) that can improve circulation, ensure proper nerve functions and offers anti-cancer properties. Tart cherries are no exception. Some of the benefits found with drinking tart cherry concentrate include: Lowered blood pressure, lowered cholesterol, extra cancer protection (especially breast, liver, lung and skin), and most surprisingly, protection against muscle damage. Because tart cherries have anti-inflammatory properties in may assist in recovery after vigorous workouts, soothe arthritis pain, and alleviate gout. Do you have trouble sleeping? Tart cherry concentrate also contains high levels of melatonin and may aid in a healthy nights sleep.

But does it work? In terms of muscle recovery, yes it has, at least for me and a few other runners I work with. After working out I have tried 2 tbsp of the concentrate and I have less muscle soreness. I have also slept better lately. For me this is huge! I often have a problem falling asleep at night since my work schedule rotates between day and late evening shifts.

Will it work for you? Who knows. It has been working for me and at least 10 more of my co-workers. I figure using cherry juice is better than popping pills to alleviate my pain and also to help me sleep at night.

Where can I find it? How much does it cost? I have found it in my local grocery store in the refrigerated juice isle. Also available from various orchards online. It is cheaper to buy in bulk online than at the store. So find a few friends who will split and order with you and share the benefits.